We’ve put together some inside tips on being a Class Rep.
The SRC and sparqs have worked together to produce a handbook to guide new Class Reps on what kind of tasks they might be set, roles they will be asked to play and how best to go about it.
If you attend the training you will receive a copy of the handbook, which has space to take notes of the discussions during the training session.
You need to attend Class or PGR Rep training for your term as a Representative to be recorded on your Higher Education Achievement Report (HEAR). The handbook is designed to be used during the training sessions which will fill in all the gaps.
Key Dates, Contacts and Checklist
The SRC has produced a handy one-page list of the main dates to be aware of this year, who to contact about various issues and a checklist for class reps to make sure that you are not missing anything during the year. All the things in the checklist are explained in the class rep training, so do try and ensure you make it to a session if you haven’t before.
The document is available here: Class Rep Key Dates Resource
Staff & Student Liaison Committee
SSLC is just a fancy name for a meeting where some senior members of staff, admin staff and lecturers get together with Class Reps to discuss any subject-wide or School-wide issues
What points to raise
- Issues that involve the subject area or School as a whole e.g. resources, essay deadlines.
- Issues that may be of interest to other students in the university, main library opening hours, computer / web access.
What not to take…
- Specific individual concerns – These can be dealt with by lecturers/ class tutors / supervisors
- Problems with lecturers – SSLC is no place to rant about a lecturer. Speak constructively and diplomatically to the lecturer concerned first, then if there is no resolution you can go to the head of subject or School.
- Personal complaints of students – These need to be dealt with on an individual basis, if in doubt speak to the School Rep/College Convenor or contact the VP (Education) for assistance. Remember that the SRC runs an Advice Centre where students can go for help with appeals, complaints and all manner of other personal issues.
SSLC Survival tips
- Don’t get bored. Ask the students you represent before the meeting if they have any issues you should raise. Use the questions in your class rep training handbook to give you ideas of what specific topics to ask about.
- Be confident! Remember that student opinion matters
- Minutes are taken, but keep your own notes, so you remember details of the discussions that are important to you and your classmates.
- Show your class that student representation is alive and kicking – report back to them on the SSLC discussions – make good use of My Class Reps discussion boards to flag issues which are in progress, or to let folk know if an action has been completed.
- Ask the School to display the minutes of the SSLC on My Class Reps, if they don’t already.
- Contact the SRC if you feel there are important issues not being followed up.
You may never have been in a meeting like a SSLC before, and how formal they are will vary. But just in case you’re worried, here’s meeting jargon simplified:
This is a list of things which will be discussed in the meeting. You should receive a copy of this in advance of the meeting. If you want to put anything on the agenda, contact the Chair at least 7 days in advance
People who can’t attend. You should notify the Chair or at least the secretary to let them know if you cannot attend.
The Chair is the person responsible for running the meeting. If you’re having difficulty getting your say, catch the Chair’s eye so they know you want to speak.
These are the official record of what happened at the meeting. Minutes are usually distributed a few days after the meeting, and at the next meeting members will decide to accept them as accurate, or not.
The secretary is responsible for recording and distributing the minutes of the meeting.
- Senate Office website has a number of useful resources including a powerpoint presentation about the benefits of being a class rep.
- The Code of Practice on Student Representation can be found by clicking on the ‘Additional Information’ tab on the Senate Office website (link above). This details how the class rep system is supposed to be run, and is a useful reference if you (or any staff) are unsure.
- The University’s Course Evaluation Policy, including a sample Summary and Response document (these should be on the agenda at your SSLC meetings!)
- SPARQS website
If you have any questions which are not answered on these pages (or by the training), you can email: email@example.com